QB: Finally good to get into a game or what?
TB:Yeah, it's fun being out there. Sitting on the sideline like last week isn't nearly as fun, so getting out there and getting a chance to play a little bit was great. It was a great experience for me, fun to be out there with my teammates, so I enjoyed it.
QB: What happened on the interception and what happened on the touchdown?
TB:Just miscommunication. It happens and I'm glad it happened in the preseason. The one thing about offensive football is all 11 guys have to be on the same page, so those are things we're all working to try to correct. On the touchdown, on the more positive side, KT [Kenbrell Thompkins] made a great catch. I've got so much confidence in him and what he's been able to do and continue to achieve for us has been great, so hopefully there will be a lot more of those.
The New England Patriots take on the Philadelphia Eagles in a preseason game at Gillette Stadium on Friday, August 15, 2014.
QB: ** When you look at the four guys when you went four wides early – Danny Amendola, Julian Edelman, Brandon LaFell and Thompkins – each of the two are paired up and are similar but they do have unique abilities. Do you say, 'Ok I can get a matchup with any of these guys?'
TB:Yeah, they all have some different skill sets to allow them to get open in different ways. We haven't done a lot of that this year, but I think all the skill guys are going to have to play a big part of our team this year. It isn't just going to be one group out there all game. Everyone who is out there is going to have to contribute. Everyone who is on the roster, who's at the game, is going to have to contribute. So it was great to see all those guys in there all making plays. It's just the way it needs to continue to be for us.
QB: Time of possession and converting third downs were pretty good for you guys.
TB:It was good, yeah. The time of possession was good. The first quarter, we had the ball most of the first quarter, which is always great, especially at home. A lot of that is converting third downs. Those are real critical points in winning the game and it was good tonight to be able to do that. The score got a little crazy there at the end, but I'm glad we came out on the winning end.
QB: How'd you like all those flags?
TB:I know, there were a lot of them. They stood up here in front of us and told us they were going to throw a lot of them and they sure did. Who knows if it will continue, but they're calling things pretty tight. Coach always says, 'Do business as business is being done,' so if they're going to call it tight…You know, we got a few extra opportunities out of it; they got a few extra opportunities out of it. It's going to be who plays the smartest, I guess.
QB: On the touchdown pass to Thompkins, is that on both you guys? Can that either go to the fade or is that faced off and you call? Or is that on both you guys and he's got to read that?
TB:Yeah, we're both reading it the same way, so I think a lot of it is us being on the same page and KT is a really instinctive player. He's made a lot of those catches, especially in that corner of the end zone, over his first year here.
QB: Does he remind you a little bit of Deion Branch, kind of the backside X guy?
TB:Yeah a little different player than Deion, but KT has a lot of strengths, there's no doubt about it. It's just for any young player, it's always just continuing to get better and make improvements. And that's every veteran player, that's everybody: we're always trying to get better. So really just becoming dependable and consistent for the team is really what is really trying to be.
QB: Going back to the flags, does that make it hard to get into a flow? Especially for you guys who like to run that up-tempo offense, how hard is that when the game stops so much?
TB:Yeah, I think if they're helping us, then I don't have any problem with it. I think when we keep going backwards – that happened to us a few times. We really kind of got ourselves out of long-yardages situations on both drives that I was in there. You're right, it's hard to overcome first-and-25 or second-and-25 or second-and-20, whatever. And we found a way to do that tonight, but I don't think you really want to exist in that, because it's impossible to be a good offense doing that. The percentages are so slim if you look over the course of the league of teams that convert on second-and-20s. I think penalties are normally drive killers. There were a lot of drives tonight that we kind of got away with, but I don't think that will last too long.
QB: Is it nice to see a lot of running backs contributing?
TB:Yeah, they're all running hard and all finding ways to contribute, so they've all got opportunity and it's great competition. It brings out the best in everybody. It's only our second preseason game, we've still got two more to go and we've got a couple real strong weeks of practice we need. But every day it's just closer and closer to the opener, so we've got to use every day the best way we can.
QB: Not that you want to throw an interception, but when you do is it almost a good thing to be able to get right back out there, knowing that you're going to have a limited work load tonight?
TB:Yeah. Yeah, it it's great being right back out on the field. I was just happy we were able to go down and score a touchdown. We had a good drive going there to start the game and we showed a little mental toughness getting the touchdown there on the second drive, so it was great.
QB: Quick observations on Ryan Mallett and Jimmy Garoppolo? How did you think that each of them did tonight?
TB:Yeah, they're very talented players so it's fun for me to watch them. I see how hard they work in practice, so for them to get the opportunity, they both did a great job. It's about doing the best you can on every play. It's making the right calls, making the right reads, making the right decisions. We can always do better. It's certainly not a game of perfect, but it was good enough to win.